The Ashville Fourth of July Festival will be held June 30 through July 4, at Ashville Park by The Ashville Community Men’s Club. This will be the 89th year, but the connection between Ashville and the celebration of freedom has gone back farther than that.
Before the current events were started in 1929, there were several years that community festivities were held, dating back to 1903. The early events weren’t held by an organization, but included events like long jumping and a baseball game. The festival also had lunch stands and a Merry-go-round to entertain the people who attended.
Many things have changed over the years but with one goal in mind, to celebrate the Nation’s independence in a small-town community. According to an advertisement from 1905, “There’ll be Doin’s at Ashville July 4th,” which is a statement that still rings true today.
Music & Entertainment
Recognized as one of the oldest Fourth of July Festivals in the state, the event has plenty of free entertainment spanning its five-day run. Performances on the main stage start on the weekend beginning June 30, at 8:30 p.m. with Walker McGuire. Followed on July 1, by Cornerstone Gospel at 2 p.m., Slaw Dog at 3 p.m. and Redemption Flood. at 5pm.
Entertainment continues through the week and will feature Nathan Boyce and the Sweet Talkers at 5 p.m. and Freedom Highway at 9 p.m. on Monday, July 2. Tuesday, July 3, Tony Scarberry and Monotone will take the stage at 5 p.m. and Shelby County Line will complete the night’s entertainment at 8 p.m.. On the final day, Wednesday, July 4, Country Live Performers play at 1 p.m., Dallas plays at 5 p.m. and, to close out the festival, Carter Winter performs at 8:30 p.m..
In addition to the scheduled entertainment acts, The Ashville Idol, sponsored by The Pickaway County Banking Center will be returning. Signups will be held Saturday June 31, at 4:30 p.m. with the Preliminary competition beginning at 5 p.m. and finals at 7 p.m. on July 4. Entry is $5, with the winner earning a $300 prize and all finalists earn $50.
Rides furnished by Triple Treat Shows, include ride specials everyday for $18 per person. The special on June 30 and July 1 will be from Noon to close; July 2-3, 5 p.m to close; July 4, from 11 a.m.-5p.m..
Contests & Parades
The always-popular Baby Contest will take place Saturday, June 30, with registration starting at 10 a.m. and the contest beginning at 11 a.m.. On Sunday, July 1, at 7 p.m. the Miss Ashville Fourth of July Parade will be held followed by the contest at 7:45 p.m.. The Little Mr. and Miss Parade is Monday July 2, at 7 p.m., followed by the Pageant at 8 p.m.. See our article on Miss Ashville.
The final and largest parade of the event will take place July 4, at 11 a.m.. The Grand Parade will feature several entrants including floats, fire trucks, festival queens, youth sports teams, horses and of course Uncle Sam. Deadline for entries in the parade are June 24, and can be found at www.ashville4thofjuly.com.
Fish & Other Food
The festival organizers take pride in their fish stand, where they will fry over one ton of Perch. They claim that the fried fish they cook is “as big as your hand”. You can find this delectable dish in the closed shelter house. The Fish Stand will be opening with Midway on the weekend days, June 30 and July 1, at noon. Then on the weekdays, July 2-3, will bumped until 5 p.m.. On the festival’s final day, the Fish Stand and Midway will open at 11 a.m..
As always, several other food vendors will be present. From elephant ears to corn dogs, it will all be there.
The event closes with a fireworks display at 10 p.m. on July 4. The fireworks are financed and organized by the Men’s Club. The Ashville Community Park offers great views for the show and provides a safe location for families. The firework display lasts approximately 30 minutes.